China’s First Aircraft Carrier Leaves Homeport for Sea Trials

 

China’s First Aircraft Carrier Leaves Homeport for Sea Trials

China’s first aircraft carrier, the Liaoning, has left its homeport of Qingdao in east China’s Shandong Province to conduct scientific experiments and sea training, naval authorities said Tuesday.

This was the first time for the carrier to leave its homeport to conduct training voyage since it anchored there in February, according to the People’s Liberation Army (PLA) Navy.

The Liaoning and its crew members had conducted a series of scheduled tests and training drills in the homeport during the period.

Currently, China operates one aircraft carrier, the Liaoning, which was refitted based on an unfinished Russian-made carrier and delivered to the Navy on Sept. 25, 2012.

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CM-400AKG, tough job for Indian Navy

cm400akg
China has developed a hypersonic Aircraft carrier killer missile and has been deployed by the PAF.
The missile has been described as the PAF’s Hypersonic ‘Carrier Killer Missile’
Pakistan has deployed a new hypersonic long-range air-launched missile that officials in the Pakistan Air Force (PAF) have described as “a hypersonic aircraft carrier killer missile”.
The CM-400AKG is a Mach 4 plus-capable air-to-surface weapon developed in China and now in service with JF-17 fighter aircraft of the Pakistan Air Force. The weapon, designated CM-400AKG, was designed and developed in China by the China Aerospace Science and Industry Corporation (CASIC) and was revealed at Airshow China 2012, held in Zhuhai in November.
The CM-400AKG is now part of the operational weapon set of the PAF’s JF-17 Thunder multirole fighter. “This is a mature weapon that has been fully tested. It is not conceptual. It is in service,” Air Commodore Mahmood Khalid, PAF JF-17 Deputy Project Director stated. “The CM-400AKG is a very high-speed missile that is very tough to intercept. It hits the target at Mach 4 or above and its kinetic impact alone is enough to destroy any high-value target, like an aircraft carrier.”
The CM-400AKG first appeared, briefly, in public at last year’s Dubai Airshow, when a placard for the weapon was placed alongside a PAF JF-17 – and then removed. The weapon itself was not shown. At the time PAF personnel acknowledged it was a new Chinese-built air-to-surface stand-off missile. However, the initial assumption that it was a derivative of the C-802 anti-ship missile has proved to be very wide of the mark.
The CM-400AKG is a 400 kg solid-rocket-powered weapon that can be fitted with either a penetration or blast/fragmentation warhead. It is a fire-and-forget precision-guided weapon that can be fitted with several seeker options, which are understood to include an active radar seeker and an imaging infrared seeker with target-recognition (TR) capabilities. PAF sources say the missile can be pre-programmed with digital imagery for highly precise attacks against fixed sites in TR mode, but it can also be re-targeted in flight by using the radar seeker option.
The range of the CM-400AKG is estimated to be in the 200-250 km class(Indian navy ships will need to be at max 200km away from Pakistani coastline, to enforce an effective blockade). It is designed for use against fixed or what were described as “slow moving” targets. CASIC data indicates that after launch the CM-400AKG climbs to high altitude and terminates with a high-speed dive on the target. The PAF describes the missile’s impact velocity as “hypersonic” (> Mach 5).

Both CASIC and the PAF note that the CM-400AKG has been developed as a JF-17 Aircraft carrier killer weapon. The PAF currently has two squadrons of approximately 36 JF-17s operational.

Lockheed unveils unmanned surveillance and strike aircraft

By:   Dave Majumdar Washington DC

03:08 9 Apr 2013

Source:

ussa

Lockheed Martin is taking the wraps off its submission for the US Navy’s prospective unmanned carrier launched airborne surveillance and strike (UCLASS) aircraft at the Navy League’s Sea-Air-Space Exposition in Washington DC.

According to Lockheed, the bat-wing stealth aircraft, formerly referred to as the Sea Ghost, integrates proven technologies from previous manned and unmanned developments. The company is stressing an open architecture design and the “maximum reuse of hardware and software”.

As such, Lockheed’s UCLASS proposal bears a strong family resemblance to the company’s RQ-170 Sentinel unmanned aircraft, which is being flown by the US Air Force. Technologies from the F-35 programme have also been integrated into the aircraft.

Lockheed says that its UCLASS submission would be adaptable across the whole spectrum of military operations, from counter-terrorism to carrier-based strikes. “Enabling operations in any scenario – and in any environment,” the company says.

To operate in those disparate environments, the aircraft will have “multi-spectral stealth, as well as emissions and bandwidth management to defeat detection and enable mission success”, Lockheed says.

The company also claims that its UCLASS design will reduce manpower requirements because a single operator would be able to operate multiple aircraft. In recent weeks, the USN has announced its intention to fund four companies to design new unmanned air vehicles for the UCLASS programme. Boeing, General Atomics Aeronautical Systems, Lockheed Martin and Northrop Grumman “have credible, existing, comprehensive UCLASS design solutions, and associated production capabilities and facilities” to design UAVs through the preliminary design review phase, the USN says.

The pre-solicitation, announced on 26 March, is the first step towards securing funding for the carrier-based strike and surveillance aircraft. A full solicitation is likely to go out “in the summer timeframe”, says the USN.

The first UCLASS aircraft are planned for production beginning in fiscal year 2016, following a likely down-select to a single manufacturer.

Boeing unveils updated F/A-XX sixth-gen fighter concept

By:   Dave Majumdar Washington DC
6 hours ago

Source:

Boeing

Boeing is unveiling an updated version of its F/A-XX sixth-generation fighter concept at the Navy League’s Sea-Air-Space Exposition in Washington DC this week.

The tail-less twin-engine stealth fighter design comes in “manned and unmanned options as possibilities per the US Navy,” Boeing says. The design features diverterless supersonic inlets reminiscent of those found on the Lockheed Martin F-35 Joint Strike Fighter.

The Boeing concept also features canards, which is somewhat of a surprise because the motion of those forward mounted control surfaces is generally assumed to compromise a stealth aircraft’s frontal radar cross-section. But the lack of vertical tail surfaces suggests the aircraft would be optimized for all-aspect broadband stealth, which would be needed for operations in the most challenging anti-access/area denial environments.

Also of note in the manned version of the company’s F/A-XX concept is the placement of the cockpit-rearward visibility appears to be restricted without the aid of a sensor apparatus similar to the F-35‘s distributed aperture system of six infrared cameras.

The Boeing F/A-XX concept is a response to a USN request for information (RFI) from April 2012 soliciting data for a replacement for the service’s Boeing F/A-18E/F Super Hornet and EA-18G Growler fleets in the 2030s. The Super Hornet fleet is expected to start reaching the end of the jet’s 9000h useful lifespan during that time period.

“The intent of this research is to solicit industry inputs on candidate solutions for CVN [nuclear-powered aircraft carrier] based aircraft to provide air supremacy with a multi-role strike capability in an anti-access/area denied (A2AD) operational environment,” the navy RFI stated. “Primary missions include, but are not limited to, air warfare (AW), strike warfare (STW), surface warfare (SUW), and close air support (CAS).”

Navy leaders had said at the time that they expect any new F/A-XX design to have greatly increased range and offer far superior kinematic performance compared to existing tactical aircraft.